Revisiting violent videogames research: Game Studies perspectives on aggression, violence, immersion, interaction, and textual analysis

Kyle Kontour
Media Studies
University of Colorado at Boulder


Aarseth, Espen (2003). Playing Research: Methodological approaches to game analysis.
Game Approaches / Spil-veje. Papers from the Confer-ence, August 28-29.  Available online: Retrieved April 4, 2008.

Aarseth, E., Smedstad, S.M. & Sunnana, L. (2003).  A Multi-Dimensional Ty-pology of Games, in Copier, M. & Raessens, J. (eds.) Level Up: Digital Games Research Conference Proceedings.  University of Utrecht, 48-54.

Anderson, C.A. (2004).  An update on the effects of playing violent video games. Journal of Adolescence, 27, 113-122.

Anderson, C. A., & Bushman, B. J. (2002). The effects of media violence on society.  Science, 295,  2377-2378.

Anderson, C.A. & Dill, K.E. (2000). Video Games and Aggressive Thoughts, Feelings, and Behavior in the Laboratory and in Life.  Journal of Personality and Social  Psychology, 78 (4),  772-790.

Apperley, T. H. (2006).  Genre and game studies: Toward a critical approach to video game genres. Simulation & Gaming 37 (1), 6-23.

Apperley, T.H. (2007).  Of Sins, Vices and Pecados: The Cultural Context of Videogame Play, in     Caspi, D. & Azra, T. (eds.), New Media and Inno-vative Technologies (pp. 240-621).  Negev:  Hubert Burda Center for Inno-vative Communications.

Associated Press (2006).  Poll: Millions of Americans play electronic games.  USA Today
(online version).  May 7, 2006. Retrieved May 10, 2006.

Ballard, M.E. & Wiest, J.R. (1996) Mortal Kombat TM: The effects of violent videogame play on males’ hostility and cardiovascular responding.  Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 26(8), 717-730.

Barnett, M.A., Vitaglione, G.D., Harper, K.K.G., Quackenbush, S.W., Stead-man, L.A. & Valdez, S. (1997).  Late adolescents’ experiences with and at-titudes toward video games.  Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 27(15), 1316-1334.

Bartle, R. (1996). Hearts, Clubs, Diamonds, Spades:  Players Who Suit Muds.  Journal
of MUD Research 1 (1). Re-trieved December 16, 2007.

Bolter, J. D. & Grusin, R. (2000). Remediation: Understanding new media. Cam-bridge: MIT Press.

Bushman, B.J. & Anderson, C.A. (2002). Violent Video Games and Hostile Expectations: A Test of the General Aggression Model. Personal and Social Psychology Bulletin, 28 (12), December, 1679-1686.

Capcom (1996). Resident Evil. Published for PlayStation, in the USA, by Cap-com.

Consalvo, M. (2003).  Hot Dates and Fairy-Tale Romances:  Studying Sexuality in Video
Games, in Wolf, J.P. and Bernard Perron (eds.), The Video Game Theory Reader (pp. 171-194).  New York:  Routledge.

Chory-Assad, R.M. & Mastro, D.E. (2000). Violent videogame use and hostility among high school students and college students.  Paper presented at the Mass Communication Division of the National Communication Associa-tion at its annual meeting (Seattle, November 2000).

Dovey, J. & Kennedy, H. (2006). Game cultures: Computer games as new media. Maidenhead: Open University Press.

Ermi L. and Mäyrä F. (2005). Fundamental Components of the Gameplay Ex-perience: Analysing Immersion’, Changing Views: Worlds in Play. Se-lected Papers of the 2005 Digital Games Research Association’s Second International Conference, de Castell S. and Jenson J. eds.   Available on-line: Retrieved Decem-ber 16, 2007.

Federal Bureau of Investigation (2006). Crime in the United States.  Crime in the United States by Volume and Rate per 100,000 Inhabitants, 1987 – 2006.  Available online:

Federal Trade Commission (2000).  FTC Releases Report on the Marketing of Violent
Entertainment to Children.  September 2000. Retrieved September 24, 2007.

Federal Trade Commission (2002).  Marketing Violent Entertainment to Chil-dren: Self-
Regulation and Industry Practices in the Motion Picture, Music Record-ing, and
Electronic Game Industries. October 1, 2002. Retrieved September 24, 2007.

Feliciak, M. (2003).  Hyperidentitites: Postmodern Identity Patterns in Mas-sively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games, in Wolf, J.P. and Bernard Perron (eds.), The Video Game Theory Reader (pp. 87-102).  New York: Routledge.

Felson, R.B. (1996). Mass Media Effects on Violent Behavior.  Annual Review of Sociology, 22, 103-128.

Ferguson, C. J. (2007a). Evidence for publication bias in video game violence effects
literature:  A meta-analytic review. Aggression and Violent Behavior 12, 470-482.

Ferguson, C. J (2007b). The Good, The Bad and the Ugly: A Meta-analytic Re-view of
Positive and Negative Effects of Violent Video Games. Psychiatry Quar-terly, 78, 309-316.

Gentile, D.A., Lynch, P. J., Linder, J.R. and Walsh, D. A.(2003).  The effects of violent video game habits on adolescent hostility, aggressive behaviors, and school performance. Journal of Adolescence, 27 (1), 5-22.

id software (1993). Doom. Published for PC, in the USA, by id software.

Infinity Ward (2007). Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. Published for PC, in the USA, by Activision.

Jakobssen, N., & Taylor, T.L. (2003). The Sopranos Meets EverQuest Social Networking in Massively Multiplayer Online Games. Proceedings of the 2003 Digital Arts and Culture (DAC), Melbourne, Australia. Retrieved Janu-ary 10, 2008.

Jarvinen, A. (2003). Making and Breaking Games: A Typology of Rules, in Copier, M. & Raessens, J. (eds.) Level Up: Digital Games Research Conference Proceedings.  University of Utrecht, 68-80.

Jenkins, H. (2004). Reality bytes: Eight myths about video games debunked. Retrieved November 30 2008, from ‘The Video Game Revolution’,

Jin, D.Y.  & Chee, F. (2008). Age of New Media Empires: A Critical Interpreta-tion of the Korean Online Game Industry.  Games and Culture 3 (1),  38-58.

Juul, J. (2005). Half-Real:  Video Games Between Real Rules and Fictional Worlds. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

King, G & Kryzwinska, T. (2002). Introduction, in G. King & T. Kryzwinska (eds.). Screenplay: Cinema/videogames/interfaces (pp. 1-32). London: Wall-flower.

Klimmt, C. (2003).  Dimensions and Determinants of the Enjoyment of Play-ing Digital Games: A Three-Level Model.  Level Up: Digital Games Research Conference, Copier M. and Raessens J. eds., Utrecht: Faculty of Arts, Utrecht University, 246-257.

Kontour, K. (2007). Community, Creativity, and ‘Kickassery’:  Players, Text and Ideology in America’s Army.  Popular Culture Association/American Cul-ture Association National Conference, Boston, Massachusetts, April  2007.

Koznac, L. (2002). Computer game criticism: A method for computer game analysis. Proceedings of the Computer Games and Digital Culture Con-ference. Tampere, Finland, 89-100.  Available online: Retrieved De-cember 17, 2007.

Küklich, J. (2002).  The Study of Computer Games as a Second-Order Cyber-netic System. Proceedings of the Computer Games and Digital Cultures Conference, 101-111.  Available online:  Retrieved December 17, 2007.

Lahti, M. (2003).  As We Become Machines:  Coroporealized Pleasures in Video Games, in Wolf, J.P. and Bernard Perron (eds.), The Video Game Theory Reader (pp 157-170)  New York: Routledge.

Lauteren, G. (2002). The Pleasure of the Playable Text: Towards an Aesthetic Theory of Computer Games. Proceedings of the Computer Games and Digital Cultures Conference, 217-225.  Available online:  Retrieved February 3, 2008.

Li, N., Jackson, M.H. & Trees, A.R. (2008).  Relating Online: Managing Dialec-tical Contradictions in Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Rela-tionships. Games and Culture 3 (1), 76-97.

Lindley, C. A. and Sennerstein, C. C. (2006). A Cognitive Framework for the Analysis of Game Play: Tasks, Schemas and Attention Theory.  Presented at the Workshop on the Cognitive Science of Games and Game Play, CogSci 2006, the 28th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Soci-ety, 26-29 July, Vancouver, Canada.  Available online:  Re-trieved December 18, 2007.

Lowery, S. A. & DeFleur, M. (1995).  Milestones in Mass Communications Research: Media Effects (3rd edition).  White Plains, NY:  Longman.

Lowood, H. (2006). Storyline, Dance/Music, or PvP?: Game Movies and Community Players in World of Warcraft. Games and Culture 1 (4), 362-382.

Malliet, S. (2006).  Adapting the Principles of Ludology to the Method of Videogame Content Analysis. Game Studies 7 (1).  Retrieved December 4, 2007.

Malliet, S. & De Meyer, G. (2006). Violence in videogames: what do we know, and how can we     improve our knowledge?’ [unpublished article]. Retrieved May 25, 2007.

National Commission on the Causes and Prevention of Violence (1969). Mass Media and Violence.  Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office.

Nielsen Media (2006).  The State of the Console: Video Game Console Usage, Fourth Quarter     2006.    Niel-sen_Report_State_Console_03507.pdf  Retrieved Feb. 1, 2008.

Newman, James (2002). The myth of the ergodic videogame: Some thoughts on player-character relationships in videogames. Game Studies, 2 (1),  Retrieved December 4, 2007.

Newman, J. (2005). Playing (with) Videogames. Convergence 11, 48-67.

Rehak, B. (2003).  Playing at Being:  Psychoanalysis and the Avatar, in Wolf, J.P. and Bernard Perron (eds.), The Video Game Theory Reader (pp. 103-128).  New York: Routledge.

Reid, E. (1995). Virtual Worlds:  Culture and Imagination, in Jones, Steven G. (ed.) Cybersociety:  Computer-Mediated Communication and Community (pp. 164-183).  Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, Inc.

Schutte, N.S., Malouff, J.M., Post-Gorden, J.C. & Rodasta, A.L. (1988). Effects of playing videogames on children’s aggressive and other behaviors. Jour-nal of Applied Social Psychology, 18(5), 454-460.

Sherry, J.L. (2001). The effects of violent video games on aggression: A meta-analysis. Human Communication Research, 27(3), 409-431.

Silver, M. (1994).  The rating game. US News & World Report.  117 (20), 92-93.

Sparks, G. G. & Sparks, S. W. (2002). Effects of Media Violence, in Bryant, J. and Zillman, D. (eds.) Media Effects: Advances in Theory and Research [2nd ed.] (pp. 269-286). Mahwah,  New Jersey and London:  Lawrence, Erl-baum Associates.

Squire, K. (2006). From Content to Context: Videogames as Designed Experi-ence. Educational Researcher 35 (8), 19-29.

Staten, J. (1994).  SPA mulls software games rating system. MacWeek. 8 (1), 54.

Taylor, L. (2003). When Seams Fall Apart: Video Game Space and the Player. Game Studies, 3 (2);  Re-trieved January 5, 2008.

U.S. Army (2002). America’s Army. Published for PC, in the USA, by the U.S. Army.

Van Looy, J. (2003).  Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown: interactivity and signification in     ‘Head Over Heels’. Game Studies, 3 (2);  Retrieved January 5, 2008.

Wiegman, O & Van Schie, E.G.M. (1998). Video game playing and its relations with aggressive and prosocial behavior. British Journal of Social Psychology, 37, 367-378.

Winkel, M., Novak, D.M. & Hopson, H. (1987).  Personality factors, subject gender, and the effects of aggressive video games on aggression in ado-lescents. Journal of Research in Personality, 21, 211-223.

Yates, S. J. and Littleton, K. (1999).  Understanding Computer Game Cultures:  a     Situated Approach. Information, Communication and Society 2 (4), 566 – 583.

AbstractReferences | Full Text:  HTMLPDF (Size: 1MB)

Post a comment

Digital Culture & Education (DCE) is an international inter-disciplinary peer-reviewed journal dedicated to the exploration of digital technology’s impacts on identity, education, art, society, culture and narrative within social, political, economic, cultural and historical contexts.

We are interested in empirical and conceptual approaches to theorising globalisation, development, sustainability, wellbeing, subjectivities, networks, new media, gaming, multimodality, literacies and related issues and their implications for how we educate and why. We encourage submissions in a variety of modes and invite guest editors to propose special editions.

DCE is an online, open access journal. It does not charge for article submission or for publication. All manuscripts submitted to DCE are double blind reviewed. Articles are published through a Creative Commons (CC) License and made available for viewing and download on a bespoke page at


Follow us on Twitter at @DigitalCultureE

The scale and speed at which digital culture has entered all aspects of our lives is unprecedented. We publish articles and digital works including eBooks (published under Creative Commons Licenses) that address the use of digital (and other) technologies and how they are taken up across diverse institutional and non-institutional contexts. Scholarly reviews of books, conferences, exhibits, games, software and hardware are also encouraged.

All manuscripts submitted to Digital Culture & Education (DCE) are double-blind reviewed where the identity of the reviewers and the authors are not disclosed to either party.

Digital Culture & Education (DCE) does not have article submission charges. Read more

Manuscripts should include:
1. Cover sheet with author(s) contact details and brief biographical statement(s).

Instructions for Authors

Manuscripts submitted should be original, not under review by any other publication and not published elsewhere.
The expected word count for submissions to the journal is approximately 7500 words, excluding references. Each paper should be accompanied by an abstract of up to 200 words.  Authors planning to submit manuscripts significantly longer than 7500 words should first contact the Editor at

All pages should be numbered. Footnotes to the text should be avoided and endnotes should be used instead. Sponsorship of research reported (e.g. by research councils, government departments and agencies, etc.) should be declared.

Read more

Digital Culture & Education (DCE) invites submissions on any aspect of digital culture and education.  We welcome submissions of articles and digital works that address the use of digital (and other) technologies and how they are taken up across diverse institutional and non-institutional contexts. For further inquiries and submission of work, send an email to editor@